Hi – a few folks wanted to know a bit more about my dissertation path. Here is the short answer:
Why a PhD?
My undergrad is in Education, but I never wanted to get licensed to teach. However, even without the license – the Edu degree still opened doors – like I taught for YSI in San Jose, taught science for the State of Virginia, and got a special counselor job in FL because with my Edu degree they could bill for classes I taught. However, it reached a point where my job options were limited. Also, we started home educating our boys and so it seemed ideal to go back to school while they were learning too. So after getting my Masters in I & O, the PhD track began! And now, after being in the program and really getting into research, this degree is not only about the job options I will have – it has been life-changing! I am proud to contribute to the world of research literature – even if my work only represents a tiny spec in the field.
What is your area of study?
My study area is Industrial & Organizational Psychology, which is the study of work behavior – and it looks at work motivation, job attitudes, issues of HR (recruiting, hiring, training, performing, etc.), and organizational factors (climate, culture, etc.).
Why I & O?
I wanted to study I & O because I think that “work” is one of the most important things for all humans.
Also, I had two really great bosses who modeled – for me – the art and science of managing people. When you work under AMAZING leadership, which is empowering and exciting – well it is no small matter. There are other reasons I chose this field – but that is for another post!
The first boss – Kyle Reed (in Denver, CO) – proprietor and small business owner – who was generous with his funds, creative with his leadership training, and in tune with discerning what each manager needed for motivation and perks. Complete inspiration! I stopped working for him because we relocated to FL (mom was having a kidney transplant), but I also see now that God was changing our path to give us more time together as a family. (God was weaning me from the world of work because the plan He had for our family involved positioning me to manage the home – and I am proud to be an available mom and wife. I miss the professional hours at times (but family life is even more rewarding – and being in school has fed me much!) Oh, and I do not want to get started on the “charged” topic about women working outside the home, but one thought for you to chew on pertains to the working woman described in Proverbs 31 - So while I believe that some situations are more ideal and have strengths – only God knows what each family needs and we all have to follow what He leads for jobs, the hats we wear, and what we do for work, etc.)
Mary VanDoozer (Arvada, CO) is the other manager (and now former small business owner) who was inspiring to work for and with. As a young college student in the early 90′s, working under her “fair” leadership – and with her life life-giving autonomy – well she showed that good leaders know when to delegate – but also know when to step in and work along side with!
What is your study about?
I am studying work motivation! (via the lens of Herzberg’s (1959) motivation-hrgiene theory – which is often misinterpreted, and Adams’ (1963) equity theory).
First, NCU had the I & O program that I wanted (So did U of R – but they were triple the price). Second, I needed/wanted online. Third, I wanted a non-religious school. This is not the time to talk about the Christian community, and how diverse it is these days – because as many of you know, I love my dear brothers and sisters in Christ, and I do not forsake the gathering with them that leads to fortification and strengthening- it is essential to have that -
but many times the adjective Christian means NOTHING – and sometimes Christian school, Christian business, or “Christian whatever” means “ulgh.” And so I say – “show it”
Let actions and behaviors do the talking! Fruits and outcomes say it all – and many times we may say one thing – and may really think we are this or that – but then lifestyle and choices that are made are actually incongruent with verbiage and titles.
And the neat thing is that I have actually encountered more “on-fire” Christ-followers at NCU (again and again completed dissertations at our school open with, “I’d like to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…”) And so I have encountered more sold out believers here then I have in some of the groups that have the purposively placed Christian adjective in the title. Anyhow, the school is not perfect, but NCU has plenty of strengths and they are striving for excellence – and that means a lot to me – and I do recommend this school.
Real quick side note – I also recommend “some” Christian colleges -and we want our boys to get their undergrad degrees from a good Christian college someday. The strength of a Christian school is that the curricula is usually hand selected to highlight faith and keep out filth (and we recently talked with two different 20 year olds who shared about some of the inappropriate s*x articles they were mandated to read at a secular university- unGodly and even a bit perverse).
When will you be done?
However, there is a lot of waiting time as a review board has to approve each phase and then things come up with different segments of our work. So I am trying to enjoy the ride – and I know that the end date is in flux a bit.